Rob Schremp scored the shootout winning goal while Dwayne Roloson stopped 41 shots to lift the Islanders to a 2-1 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets at the Nassau Coliseum.
With both teams scoreless after two rounds of the shootout, Rob Schremp gave the Islanders the lead in the final round with a shot over the right leg pad of Columbus goaltender Steve Mason after some nifty fakes to throw the Columbus goaltender off his game.
That would be the game winner as Roloson stopped Fedor Tyutin on Columbus's third attempt to give the Isles the victory.
After the game, Schremp gave credit where credit was due.
"A lot of the credit goes to Martin Biron he gave me a lot of confidence (at the morning skate)," Schremp said. "I went 4-for-4 on him."
Islanders Head Coach Scott Gordon knew that choosing Schremp would give his team the advantage in the shootout.
"As you watch Rob, he's one of our most skilled players," Gordon said. "His hands are second to none on our team. He's not a hard decision to pick in the shootout. Not even close."
Jeff Tambellini and Frans Nielsen were both stopped on the Islanders first two attempts, while Kristian Huselias and Columbus star Rick Nash were also thwarted by Roloson to preserve the scoreless shootout after two rounds.
"It's from being lucky and also knowing the guy for a while," Roloson said on stopping Nash in the shootout. "Rick likes to do a couple of different things, and I just tried to stay with him the best I could."
Josh Bailey put the Islanders on the scoreboard first midway through the first period with his eighth goal of the season. As Bailey was entering the Columbus zone, he sent a drop pass off to Kyle Okposo just over the Blue Jackets blue line. Okposo let a hard and high slapshot towards Mason.
Mason however couldn’t get a good handle on the shot with his blocker and it started to hop behind him. Bailey chased the puck down and just got his stick on the puck before it crossed the goal line and before Columbus defensemen Jan Hejda could swipe it away to give the Islanders a 1-0 lead.
Okposo was originally credited with the goal, but after further review Bailey was awarded the tally after the second period started.
"I felt like I kind of (touched it)," Bailey said. "I know it was their guy who got more of it, but either way it didn't really matter because it went in the back of the net."
The Columbus netminder’s blocker was tested shortly before the goal when Trent Hunter sent a centering pass to a streaking Schremp. Schremp managed to deflect the puck up in the air, to which Mason had to push the puck back up with his blocker pad, but eventually landed in his glove.
Prior to that, Roloson was strong from the get-go, stopping Antoine Vermette on a Columbus scoring chance eight minutes into the first period. Jakub Voracek cut down the left side into the Islanders zone and sent a centering pass towards Vermette. Roloson dove to his right and managed to get his blocker on the shot to keep the Blue Jackets scoreless.
Roloson stopped 14 shots apiece in both the first and second periods to keep the Blue Jackets off the board.
The Islanders received their first power play in the third period when RJ Umberger was called for tripping at the 1:15 mark. That was coupled with a Mathieu Roy delay of game penalty which led to a 56 second two-man advantage. However, the Islanders were not able to convert on the 5-on-3, only registering two shots.
RJ Umberger tied the game up for Columbus 9:47 into the third period with his 13th goal of the season. Umberger dangled behind Roloson for a few seconds and cut in front of the net, turning his back to the play. Umberger then slid a backhander which looked to deflect off Andy Sutton’s stick and through Roloson’s legs to tie the game at 1-1.
Umberger continues to have success against the Islanders - as his goal was the 10th in his career in 24 games against them.
Roloson stayed strong in the third period however, stopping 11 shots in the final 20 minutes and 41 overall for the win.
"I didn't even know they had that many shots," Roloson said. "I just tried to stay square the best I can and control the rebounds." Three Stars of the Game:
1. Dwayne Roloson, NYI: 41 saves for the win 2. Josh Bailey, NYI: 8th goal of the year. 3. RJ Umburger, COL: 13th goal of the season
Road "Blues": With Tuesday night's loss against the Islanders, the Blue Jackets have gone the last 12 games on the road without a win (0-8-4).
Slapshots: Columbus outshot the Islanders, 42-25...Mark Streit led all Islanders in ice time with 26:44...Columbus was 0-for-3 (4 shots) on the power play, while the Islanders were scoreless on four man advantages (3 shots)...Nate Thompson and Freddy Meyer (both healthy) were the Islanders scratches...This was the first and only time these teams will meet this season...Islanders now hold an all-time record of 3-6-2 against Columbus.
COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS
Forwards 20 Kristian Huselius - 61 Rick Nash - 18 RJ Umberger
14 Raffi Torres - 50 Antoine Vermette - 93 Jakub Voracek
33 Fredrik Modin - 26 Samuel Pahlsson - 11 Chris Clark
21 Alexandre Picard - 16 Derick Brassard - 40 Jared Boll
36 Mathieu Roy - 8 Jan Hejda
51 Fedor Tyutin - 6 Anton Stralman
23 Milan Jurcina - 10 Kris Russell